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HomeAnswersDentistrypericoronitisI have swollen lymph nodes and gums over the wisdom tooth. Please help.

I have pericoronitis and swollen lymph nodes. Can I wait until my appointment?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At July 20, 2018
Reviewed AtSeptember 25, 2023

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I currently have pericoronitis and it has developed over these past two days. The main symptom I noticed was pain and discomfort in my lower right wisdom tooth. The tooth is half in and half out. I scheduled an appointment with my oral surgeon but would like some advice. I noticed yesterday that the lymph node almost behind my jaw on the side of the infected tooth was swollen and painful to touch. Then today, I noticed the lymph node under my chin was extremely large and painful to touch as well. It was not like that yesterday. Because of that, I went into an urgent care and he prescribed me Penicillin and painkillers. I have only taken one Penicillin pill over these past few hours. I started to do more research on the topic and came across multiple reputable websites stating that if you have swollen lymph nodes with pericoronitis to go to the hospital. I am wondering if I need to go this evening or if I can wait until the morning and discuss it with my oral surgeon.


Welcome to icliniq.com.

Pericoronitis itself is usually painful mainly because of food entrapment between the gums and the half-erupted tooth along with inflammation there. The swollen and painful lymph nodes are nothing but indications of persistent infection. It does not mean that you have to rush to the hospital in this case. Once the infected tooth is pulled out and the gums heal normally, the lymph nodes get back to normal. The only case when you should be much concerned is that big swelling of the cheek which is visible on the face. You had mentioned that you had tablet Penicillin and painkillers. This is alright, it helps the infection go down a little bit while you wait for your appointment. But ideally, active dental treatment along with antibiotic coverage would be most helpful. You could as well continue Penicillin for at least five days three times daily and painkillers whenever you have pain. You can absolutely wait until your appointment for the scheduled extraction.

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Geethanjali. S. S
Dr. Geethanjali. S. S


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